Stomach cold; Watery diarrhea is an intestinal infection with abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, and sometimes fever. Gastric cold, called viral gastroenteritis in medical literature, is most commonly transmitted to a person through contact with an infected person or consumption of contaminated food or water. If the patient is otherwise healthy, they usually recover without complications. However, viral gastroenteritis can be fatal for infants, older adults, and individuals with compromised immune systems. There is no effective treatment for viral gastroenteritis. Therefore, it is important to be protected from the disease. In addition to avoiding contaminated food and water, frequent hand washing is the best way to prevent a stomach cold.
What is a stomach cold?
Viral gastroenteritis, commonly known as stomach flu or stomach flu, is a contagious intestinal infection caused by viruses. Stomach flu is caused by a variety of viruses and usually develops after coming into contact with an infected person or consuming contaminated food or water. While stomach flu can hurt some people tremendously, most people recover within a few days without any complications. There is no specific treatment for this disease and the infection can usually be left alone with supportive treatment. Home treatments can improve symptoms and are recommended for anyone thought to be sick.
Causes stomach cold?
Eating foods infected with various viruses or drinking contaminated water, or sharing utensils, towels, or food with a sick person can cause stomach flu transmission. Several viruses can cause gastroenteritis, most commonly:
- Noroviruses: Both children and adults can be affected by noroviruses, the most common cause of foodborne infections. Norovirus infection can spread rapidly within the family and among individuals in the community.
- Rotaviruses: The most common cause of viral gastroenteritis in children who put their fingers or other virus-contaminated objects into their mouths. Rotavirus infection is more severe in infants and young children. Adults infected with rotavirus may not have any symptoms. Even if there are no symptoms, these individuals can cause the disease to spread.
Some shellfish, especially raw or undercooked oysters can cause a stomach cold. Although contaminated drinking water is a cause of viral gastroenteritis, in most cases the virus passes through the fecal-oral route. In other words, if an infected person touches food without washing their hands after using the toilet, it causes the virus to spread.
What are the symptoms of a cold stomach?
Often referred to as stomach flu or stomach flu, viral gastroenteritis has different characteristics from flu. The flu affects only the respiratory system, such as the nose, throat, and lungs. On the other hand, in stomach cold, viruses attack the digestive system and cause the following symptoms:
- Watery diarrhea
- Abdominal pain
- Abdominal cramps
- Light fever
- Sometimes muscle and headache
Depending on the cause, symptoms of a cold stomach can appear within one to three days after infection and can be mild or severe. People usually start to experience symptoms 12-48 hours after exposure to the virus. Symptoms usually only last a day or two, but in severe cases, they can sometimes last up to 10 days. Because the symptoms are similar, it is easy to confuse viral diarrhea with diarrhea caused by bacteria such as Clostridium difficult, salmonella, and E. coli, or parasites such as giardia. It is necessary to consult a doctor if the following symptoms are observed:
- Vomiting for more than two days
- Vomiting blood
- The fluid deficit in the body: Symptoms of fluid deficit include extreme thirst, dry mouth, dizziness, severe weakness, dark yellow urine,
- decreased urine output, or no urination at all.
- Blood in the stool
- Fever over 40 degrees
In children, a doctor should be consulted immediately when the following symptoms are seen:
- Fever of 38.9 ° C or higher
- Drowsiness or irritability
- A lot of discomfort or pain
- Bloody diarrhea
Dehydration of the body: It can be estimated by comparing the frequency of urination and the amount of fluid intake.
In babies, it is necessary to consult a doctor immediately if:
- Vomiting that lasts for more than a few hours
- Hasn’t soaked his diaper for six hours
- Bloody stools or severe diarrhea
- If the fontanelle has collapsed
- Dry mouth or no tears when crying
- Is unusually sleepy or unresponsive
Anyone with symptoms of stomach flu should not go to school or work. Thus, the spread of the disease is prevented and the recovery time of the patient is shortened.
How is stomach cold diagnosed?
The doctor will make a diagnosis based on the patient’s complaints, physical examination findings, and sometimes the presence of similar cases in the community. A quick stool test can detect the presence of rotavirus or norovirus in the sample. However, there are no rapid tests for other viruses that cause gastroenteritis. In some cases, a stool sample is taken for laboratory examination to rule out a possible bacterial or parasitic infection.
How is stomach cold treatment done?
There is usually no specific medical treatment for viral gastroenteritis. Antibiotics are not effective against viruses, and their overuse can lead to the development of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria. Treatment mostly consists of self-care measures.
How does stomach cold go?
Some applications can be made to improve the stomach cold faster and to reduce the severity of symptoms. Things that can be done for this purpose include:
- Abundant fluid intake: Drinking plenty of fluids is critically important as vital body fluids are lost through sweating, vomiting, and diarrhea. Individuals who have difficulty in taking fluid may try to drink small sips at regular intervals or consume liquids in the form of ice. Water, broth soups, mint, or ginger tea can be good options for those with nausea.
- The BRAT diet: In stomach flu, it can be difficult to eat something due to a lack of appetite. Consuming something can increase nausea and result in vomiting. In this case, the BRAT diet may be preferred. BRAT is derived from the English initials of bread, rice, applesauce, and toast. Bananas are easy to digest, can replace potassium lost due to vomiting and diarrhea, and strengthen the stomach lining. In case of diarrhea, white rice should be preferred. Because it is easier to process in the body and provides energy from the carbohydrates it contains. Brown rice, on the other hand, contains a lot of fiber and can cause gas. Applesauce provides an energy boost due to the carbohydrates it contains and contains pectin, which can help alleviate diarrhea. It is also easy to digest. In stomach flu, the consumption of white bread can reduce nausea. White bread should be preferred over whole wheat bread because it is easier to digest.
- Bed rest: If you have a cold, your body needs rest to fight the infection effectively. Therefore, the patient should sleep well and reduce the amount of activity he normally does during the day. For example, the person may lie down instead of sitting on the sofa. While the person is resting, his body works harder to fight infection and repair damage at the cellular level.
- Acupressure: Some experts have reported that acupuncture can reduce nausea. Applying acupressure three fingers below the palm of the palm on the inner side of the wrist can give effective results. For this purpose, the area between the thumb and two tendons can be massaged for a few minutes by applying gentle pressure.
- Foods to avoid: The person should avoid certain foods, drinks, and substances until they feel good. These include dairy products, caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, and fatty or highly spicy foods.
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